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J Med Chem. 2013 Nov 14;56(21):8533-42. doi: 10.1021/jm4012033. Epub 2013 Oct 25.

Methyl-thiazoles: a novel mode of inhibition with the potential to develop novel inhibitors targeting InhA in Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

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Department of Medicinal Chemistry, ‡Department of Biosciences, AstraZeneca India Pvt. Ltd. , Bellary Road, Hebbal, Bangalore-560024, India.


InhA is a well validated Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) target as evidenced by the clinical success of isoniazid. Translating enzyme inhibition to bacterial cidality by targeting the fatty acid substrate site of InhA remains a daunting challenge. The recent disclosure of a methyl-thiazole series demonstrates that bacterial cidality can be achieved with potent enzyme inhibition and appropriate physicochemical properties. In this study, we report the molecular mode of action of a lead methyl-thiazole, along with analogues with improved CYP inhibition profile. We have identified a novel mechanism of InhA inhibition characterized by a hitherto unreported "Y158-out" inhibitor-bound conformation of the protein that accommodates a neutrally charged "warhead". An additional novel hydrophilic interaction with protein residue M98 allows the incorporation of favorable physicochemical properties for cellular activity. Notably, the methyl-thiazole prefers the NADH-bound form of the enzyme with a Kd of ~13.7 nM, as against the NAD(+)-bound form of the enzyme.

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